Ramble: MattyCollector Hoverboard Criticism

Ramble mode on/

So I stumbled on a discussion about the upcoming MattyCollector Back to the Future Hoverboard toy/prop replica. The short of it is there are a number of complaints regarding the misrepresented accuracy of the final product in relation to the actual “Hero” movie prop. These guys take hoverboard fanaticism to the next level and I really respect that. Some of the stuff is over the top but the attention to detail is staggering. The fans feel misled, rants, ravings, and personal attacks are flying… cats and dogs getting married… People have too much time on their hands and I had an entertaining read as a result.


I have thoughts on this, even though I have no interest in purchasing one of the official replicas or even a replica replica.

A long while back at SDCC Mattel displayed an early prototype of a Back to the Future Hoverboard just prior to taking pre-orders. I thought “holy shit this thing is awesome” knowing full well it wouldn’t actually do anything besides waste my money and make pointless sounds. Hat tip to Mattel for even bothering to make something like this knowing how small the market is for niche collectables.


When I saw that prototype I was impressed and anxious to see what the finished version would look like. Mattel stressed that what they showed was very crude and the final product would be “Movie Accurate”. Seems like even with the hype not much has changed on the updated version recently shown at NYCC, which wouldn’t be that big of a deal except for one thing.

A very appealing selling point of this toy was the inclusion of a lenticular graphic on the final product just like the movie version. This assurance was repeatedly promised and re-stated by Mattel and its reps directly or indirectly. Fans have long known where and how to easily recreate the graphic so it shouldn’t be hard for a big company like Mattel to do as well.

Mattel displayed a “prototype” at NYCC which was advertised to be representative of the final product. This near production version did not display the lenticular graphics that were promised, and still maintained several glaring and easily corrected inaccuracies to the one depicted in the BTTF films. Mostly it looked the same as before but with better decals. Fans shit the bed in disappointment.


I write the minor inaccuracies off to the line in BTTF III where Doc says “The future isn’t written yet”. After the events of the trilogy things changed just enough that the actual Mattel Hoverboard is slightly different now than what may have been. So if you’re mad that the black hole is now a pink hole, the foot strap isnt fuzzy, or that the Velcro stripes are now glossy printed stickers, blame Marty. He’s the one who mucked around in the space time continuum and created this alternate future…

…but he didn’t fuck up enough to cause lenticular graphics to vanish from Mattel Hoverboards.

The missing lenticular graphic is a big deal and I couldn’t agree more with those on that side of the discussion. Mattel promised the graphics and without that feature the product seems somewhat cheap by comparison if not falsely advertised. If that single thing was there I wouldn’t have much of a problem with the board even though I am fully aware it’s not exactly screen accurate. Its pretty close from my casual standpoint in most other aspects.

The good news is Mattel realizes their massive fuckup and has offered anyone unhappy a refund. Usually these types of niche market items are non refundable so good for them for making an exception in this case.

Thanks for letting me waste your time. Please resume productive activities.